12 Months of Change: Focus on Community This September

Did you know that people who strive to be happy actually live healthier and more disease free lives? One of the best ways to accomplish this is to give back to others within our own communities.

Teaching our children about the value of community and the  need to be involved helps them learn the importance of being part of something greater than themselves and how to be giving individuals. What’s cool is that it doesn’t take that much time, energy or money but pays forward for ourselves and our communities for years to come.

This month, focus on community and help your kids understand the value of being part of the community in your area. Some areas to focus on include:

1. Week 1: The Past

Some of your kids have already done community service: choral concerts at nursing homes, planting trees in the community, making sandwiches for the homeless, food and can drives. Talk about the many things your kids have done through school, your religious organizations and home already so you can set the stage that you and your family are already part of a giving home, community and society.

This is the week to take stock in what you’ve already done.

2. Week 2: Where do you want to go?

What do you want to do this year in your community for giving? How about your kids? If there is a cause or group you’d like to contribute to that needs help, find a way to make it happen. Often the schools and religious groups are more than willing to take on a new cause and it usually doesn’t take more than a few people collecting spare change under their couches to start a big ball rolling in an exciting direction.

3. Week 3: Plan for the Holidays

With the holidays around the corner, talk with your kids about that special time and think about how you may make a special difference this year. Is there a children’s organization you can get the schools to rally around?

4. Week 4: Be Active!

One of the most fun ways to give back is to do so while moving! Is there a walk for a cause you can rally some of the kids to do that isn’t too ambitious? Many groups have kids’ walks or bikathons that not only help kids give back but move. If you find a cause that the kids want to give to but doesn’t have a moving event, create one! Your community could be the first of a nationwide movement. All it takes is someone to start the ball rolling.

Giving is important to me. If you find interesting causes for kids that are true 501 c3  charities, especially around the time of the holidays, let me know so I can make a master list of places to give!